This is a rarely seen opening and possibly the only one on internet where you can view the beginning of the film re-edited by the Studios as they liked it (instead of the well known Lucas version). I'm sorry if I only have it in Italian but this is the only one I've got... as rare as it gets.
A translation of the dialogues is to be found in this description (scroll down a bit).
Basically, in this version, the film starts with the actual ending of the film: THX1138 is escaping with the police car, two police robots are chasing him along when the engine of his car heats up and and he's stuck there waiting for it to cool down. So, with the cops approaching and in the eventuality of his death, he decides to give "us" this mental recording of how he ended up in this situation. (Scroll down for the complete translation)
Practically in this version all the story of THX that we see up until the final chase is a flashback.
You will notice that in this version the Studios also added the off-screen voice of Duvall (like they did for Blade Runner).
I hope some fans of THX out there will enjoy this rare studio re-edited beginning (although in Italian) that no one was meant to see... a part from the Italian public of the 70's.
Just to be clear, in Italy, we do have the version that came out in DVD with all those horrible CGI scenes added. This one is rare even here.
This video was taken from a tape recorded back in the early 90's.
This is my translation in English (partly corrected by Leonardo, thanks!). The off-screen speech is spoken in a Bibilical kind of way.
0.31 I have to escape. I have to escape.
0.33 I don't know what I'll find out there, but I have to escape.
0.39 C'mon, c'mon, faster!
If this thing doesn't hold up I'm done for.
START OF THE OFF-SCREEN NARRATION
2.00 The engine of the car that was going to carry me towards freedom is going to fail soon. Before my body is disintegrated by my pursuers, I want to leave a telepathic message so that my posterity will know my real story.
2.19 - The story begun in the distant July of 2002, 270 centuries ago, when solar radiations caused the simultaneous explosion of all nuclear warheads built by Man. The few survivors took refuge in deep caves, the only places uncontaminated by radiation, and there they began to rebuild their world. Men of all races solemnly swore that there would be no more wars, and dedicated themselves to building a perfect world. But perfection does not belong to Man. Perfection only belongs to the Machine built by Man. So the Machine had to regulate the life of Man, and Man built the Robot.
Man built more and more perfect Robots, and the Robot was so perfect, that it began to build Man and to control every action of his.
Man wanted a world without Evil and Unhappiness, and the Robot built an aseptic Man, free from Evil and Unhappiness.
But the elimination of Evil is the elimination of Good, because one is the opposition of the other. Already the Supreme Being had built an Earthly Paradise, in which Man had lived, until he felt that only approaching the Tree of Good and Evil, he would find Evil, but also Good and Happiness.
I don't know why this feeling in this world happened to me, and why I had to search for this Happiness that is leading my body to disintegration.
Maybe my name isn't the name written on the test tube in which I was created, THX 1138. Maybe my real name is Adam.